Wellington on a Plate has reported another banner year with numbers from outside the region increasing by 32% alongside a sharp increase in spending.
The figures, which come as a result of an Economic Impact Assessment (EIA) into the annual foodie event, show the 2012 festival generated more than $2m in direct spending.
Gross domestic product saw a boost of $655,000 alongside an increase in turnover at Wellington restaurants of nearly $3.5m.
The event also had its highest ever level of participation this year with 108 restaurants and 106 events being held across the region.
Festival co-director Sarah Meikle commented: “The report highlights the value that Visa Wellington on a Plate brings to the region. It has become an event that’s incredibly important to the culinary capital’s visitor proposition and economy.”
Now in its fourth year, Wellington on a Plate has to date brought in more than $5.5m of spending – a figure that compares favourably to the $15.6m generated by the annual Wellington Sevens tournament over 12 years.
Wellington City Council economic portfolio leader Jo Coughland added: “The hospitality industry, Wellingtonians and visitors have all embraced the festival from day one and we’re reaping the awards.”
The news comes as Auckland prepares to host its own annual foodie event, Taste of Auckland, next month.
The festival, which will run from 15-18 November 2012 in Victoria Park, will showcase some of the country’s best chefs and restaurants, plus more than 140 food and drink producers.
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